PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Seven weeks ago, a young mother of three jumped to her death after stopping her car on the Homestead Grays Bridge.
She left three young children in her vehicle on the bridge.
Since 26-year-old Stanlee Holbrook’s death in June, those involved in suicide awareness say there have been other suicide attempts on that bridge.
Those impacted by suicide say more of Pittsburgh’s bridges, especially tall ones, should have prevention fences.
Homestead Police said they see a lot of suicides and everyone involved in suicide prevention knows any deterrent can save lives.
“We need to open up and let them know we’re here, we’re here to talk,” Theresa Monroe said.
And that’s exactly what organizers of this Suicide Awareness event are working so hard to do.
Chalk For Change knows heartfelt messages: telling others “you are loved, and to “ask for help”, may prevent a tragic loss of life.
That is the message Monroe shares with her daughters daily.
“We see a lot of young people, 12, 13, 14 even taking their lives and I think that’s so sad,” Monroe said.
“None of us ever thought she was going through this. So it was like really a shock, especially to me, I would never have thought my sister would have killed herself,” said 15-year-old Amariya Bledsoe said.
Six years after Bledsoe’s 23-year-old sister jumped from the Birmingham Bridge, she still feels the hurt and anger.
Bledsoe desperately wants others to know the pain of suicide is passed on to those left behind.
“I was just sad for a very long time,” Bledsoe said.
Those involved in suicide awareness said bridges can present an opportunity to those with feelings of sadness and desperation.
“This bridge was where Stanlee Holbrook decided to jump and leave her children in the vehicle and she lost her battle with mental health,” Co-Founder of Chalk For Change Lorenzo Rulli said. “Since then, three other people have attempted unsuccessfully, thankfully, to take their life as well.”
Organizers handed out crisis literature on the bridge on Friday, and police said it’s happening so often that they are urging leaders to erect barriers.
Chalk for Change says they are available for support 24/7 and are just a call away at 412-930-7903.